May 2016 Update
Dear friends of Matènwa,
Integrated learning is thriving at MCLC! Using agricultural activities to teach subjects such as math, science, language and art has become an integral part of the learning process. In a recent lesson on seedling development following transplantation, the third graders practiced a range of skills, from counting the number of new leaves on each plant, to writing, illustrating, and discussing their observations. To help stimulate new root growth, they add organic fertilizer to the soil around each young plant. In the secondary school, the 8th graders studied some of the similarities and differences between the school’s indigenous and laying hens.
Education through conversation
Learning through dialogues in an environment of mutual respect is very important to MCLC. This is reflected in its commitment to the Reflection Circles and Open Space programs. In their latest Reflection Circle, the fourth graders talked about what makes a good or bad judge. Some said that a good judge is someone who is impartial. A bad judge, to many, is someone who “sells justice” by taking bribes.
In mid-April, we had an Open Space session with parents as well as the 10th and 11th graders on the following theme: Does it make sense for men to work on women’s rights issues? Some participants argued that men who are violating women’s rights in their private life should not be allowed to work on women’s issues and that politicians may highlight the issue during their campaigns but do not focus on it once they are in office.
Visits from Kellogg Foundation and Beyond Borders
Because of educational principles and programs such as those mentioned above, visitors from different parts of Haiti and beyond come to Matènwa to observe. April 17th - 19th, we received three people from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and 12 of their other collaborators in education, as well as three Sisters of Notre Dame led by Beyond Borders. Following his visit, Alix Cantave of Kellogg wrote: “It was an amazing learning experience which will inform our efforts to improve access to quality education in the communities where we are working in Haiti.” Thank you, dear friends of Matènwa, for your role in making us into a school that others can learn from.
Vana Edmond, MCLC Direction Committee and Chris Low, Executive Director FOM